Through these operations, the Canadian Armed Forces are contributing to a maritime presence in the region and supporting a multinational effort in implementing UN Security Council sanctions on North Korea. These sanctions are intended to urge North Korea to relinquish its weapons of mass destruction programs, nuclear weapon tests, and ballistic missile launches.
During its deployment, the Halifax-class frigate “will work with partner navies and conduct key leader engagements to enhance military cooperation and partnerships in support of Canada’s diplomatic efforts in the region,” according to a news release. It will also make six port visits in Japan, the Republic of Korea, Thailand, and the United States to directly support Canada’s diplomatic, strategic and operational efforts in the region.
“HMCS Ottawa’s deployment is a unique opportunity to demonstrate the Royal Canadian Navy’s continued presence in this strategically important region, clearly signaling that Canada is an engaged Asia-Pacific partner,” said Rear-Admiral Craig Baines, Maritime Component Commander.
In early October, the CAF will also provide a CP-140 Aurora, crew and supporting personnel to operate from Japan to boost the multinational effort in the Asia-Pacific region.
The deployment of HMCS Ottawa follows a succession of Royal Canadian Navy contributions to the region, the most recent being from February to August, in which the HMCS Regina, Naval Replenishment Unit Asterix, and a CP-140 Aurora aircraft were deployed.
“The crew of HMCS Ottawa has been working hard for months to prepare for this deployment and I have every confidence in our ability to carry out our mission,” said Commander Alex Barlow, Commanding Officer HMCS Ottawa.